Sales of Compassion in World Farming CEO Philip Lymbery’s, book Farmageddon – The True Cost of Cheap Meat, co-authored by journalist Isabel Oakeshott, have exceeded all expectations.  Within two weeks it was into its second printing.  Lymbery was in Cape Town recently to launch the book at Kalk Bay Books in a fascinating presentation hosted by 567 Cape Talk’s John Maythem.


Philip Lymbery (left) in conversation with John Maythem at Kalk Bay Books recently. Photo: Karen Larsen

Philip Lymbery (left) in conversation with John Maythem at Kalk Bay Books recently. Photo: Karen Larsen

Farmageddon is a shocking, gut-punching look at hyper-industrialised agriculture with the forecast of an ecological meltdown if we don’t move from industrial agriculture to pasture based farming (from farming in buildings to the land) rapidly.


Says Lymbery of Farmageddon in the March 2014 edition of Animal Voice, the official South African mouthpiece of Compassion in World Farming:


“I set out to produce a readable account of why feeding the world, heading off environmental catastrophe and stopping unimaginable animal suffering, are inextricably linked to ending factory farming.  Thirty-six months later, I came to realise that the impact of industrial agriculture’s long tentacles is far more serious than I ever imagined”.


Farmageddon’s message is more controversial in Africa where poverty is rife and a large tracts of the population live below the breadline but Lymbery is adamant that there is more to cheap meat than meets the eye.  “Cheap meat is not cheap meat if you add the clean-up cost to our health”, he told the Kalk Bay audience.  So how do we as individuals help bring about change?  Lymbery admits change will not happen overnight and starts with baby steps.  He offers three simple steps to start with:


1.  If you eat meat buy from a farm.

2.  Eat what you buy and cut down on waste.

3.  Eat less but better meat.


Perhaps it’s time for Cape Town to seriously consider reinstating the city’s one Meet Free Day a Week together with a need for honest labelling.

Ad board outside Kalk Bay Books announcing the Cape Town launch of  Farmageddon - The True Cost of Cheap Meat. Photo: Karen Larsen

Adding to the South African flavour, by signing Compassion in World Farming’s Vision for Fair Food and Farming in 2012, Archbishop Desmond Tutu became the first world leader to include farmed animals in the new vision for the future.


Karen Larsen

Karen was a newspaper journalist in the 1980’s working for, among others, The Star and The Daily News.  These days she focuses on documenting life in the fairest Cape in her blog Http://Theearthbeneathmyfeet.Wordpress.Com/ – a photographic journal about “Living on the tip of Africa, travelling, hiking and simply being”.


Editor’s note: Karen’s blog is beautifully created with exquisite photographs – do visit it! Viv